What is a Buff? [Gaming Definition, Meaning]

Maybe you’re new to the JRPG, MOBA and or MMORPG world and have no idea what it means when your character seems to glow or have their attack damage doubled. This ladies and gentlemen is known as a buff, the idea that your character or allies have gained strength in some way or form. However, simply just stating that won’t give you the full idea so that’s why we here at Honey’s Anime will provide some gaming titles—new and old—to help you become an expert in what a buff can do. Welcome to our What is a Buff article; let’s begin to fill your gamer minds with some knowledge.

Stat Increases

When you’re playing a single player JRPG or RPG, you’re definitely going to need to know what a buff means for a party member. If you don’t understand how to buff a specific ally or yourself, you may find yourself losing a hard boss fight pretty fast. Simply put, a buff in a single player JRPG title usually increases various stats for your party. Stats such as strength, damage, defense and speed are usually the most affected by specific buffs and will give your party a much needed boost where it matters.

1. Persona 5

  • System/Platform: PS3, PS4
  • Publisher: Atlus, Atlus USA, Deep Silver (PAL)
  • Developer: Atlus
  • Release Date: Sept 15, 2016

After helping someone in need during an argument, our main protagonist gets in trouble with the law and is branded as a criminal. Forced to change schools and live with a man named Sojiro, our main character will try to adapt to a new life and school to put his past behind him. However, when strange events begin to unfold, the protagonist ends up becoming part of a vigilante group known as Phantom Thieves of Hearts and gains the incredible power to alter the hearts of criminals by entering inside their souls via Palaces. The protagonist also gains the ability to summon Persona or manifestations of the soul. Together with other persona users, the Phantom Thieves of Hearts will rid Japan of various evils all while learning that there is a darker force working behind the scenes.

JRPGs like Persona 5 are where buffs become all too necessary to win against various bosses or enemies. In the case of Persona 5, skills like Tarukaja and Sukunda act as the means of increasing damage and evasion/speed respectively. In most JRPGs boosting damage or evasion can mean winning a fight quickly and without too much death. Most new players to JRPGs forgo using skills like these and that’s a huge mistake as they skills will only help keep you alive and hear that sweet end of battle music that means you beat the enemy. Thus if you take away anything from our What is a Buff article, take the knowledge that in single player JRPGs like Persona 5, using buffs is a must. Especially remember that when you’re attempting Persona 5 on the harder difficulties, some of these bosses will down even the strongest party if you aren’t using buffs correctly.

Persona 5 Gameplay Trailer

Needed for a MOBA

MOBA or multiplayer online battle arena is where the term buff is extremely important to know. If you’re playing a team based MOBA certain characters are very much needed in helping the team—and yourself— survive against the opposing enemy force. If you’re controlling a character who can increase DPS—damage per second—and have no idea how that helps your skills you’re probably going to hear some harsh words and or text from your friends. Let us dive into a very popular MOBA title to give you a better example of what we mean.

2. League of Legends

  • System/Platform: PC, macOS
  • Publisher: Riot Games
  • Developer: Riot Games
  • Release Date: Oct 27, 2009

Developer Riot Games’ League of Legends is a third person MOBA title. Players will choose one of various heroes—or more aptly named champions— and go up against other teams in various game modes. The objective is to reach the enemy’s base and destroying it. Along the way teams will need to rely on each other to take down towers and other players which stop their progress. With tons of playable characters and various means of play styles, players will be able to engage in League of Legend in numerous ways. Download for free League of Legends and get ready to engage in a tactical battle for supreme victory.

In MOBA type games, Buffs will be something your party will desperately need in combat against other opponents and some of the various enemies on the map. These buffs can be given via relics—items you purchase while at your base—or by using the champion’s own skills. A great example we can give is Evelynn’s Shadow Walk which gives the player a temporary means of retreat or sneaking behind an enemy champion. Another example is Master Yi’s Wuju Style which gives increased damage. There are dozens of skills in MOBA that acts as buffs and mastering them will give the player an edge against another opponent, without them some characters will die in a mere moment. If you want to help out your team on any MOBA game, learn the buffs for your selected champion so you act as a strong ally and not a liability.

League of Legends- Cinematic Trailer: A New Dawn

Raiding Necessity

Now to wrap up our buff definition, let us look at one more prime example of where knowing what a buff is will lead to success. In many online titles—like the one we’re going to mention below—you’re going to have to enter into Raids. These events are usually long quest like events where party members will need to be at their best because failure means having to usually restart or wait for time to resurrect. Buffs here will help raids go by smoother in numerous ways such as helping to increase healer mana regeneration or give the party some much needed damage boosts. Don’t worry if this seems like a lot to take in. With our last example you’re going to be all to ready next time to help out in a raid.

3. World of Warcraft

  • System/Platform: PC , macOS
  • Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment
  • Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
  • Release Date: Feb 11, 2005

World of Warcraft is a massively multiplayer online title where players gather to join various races and fight various evils. Players can experience thousands of quests and equally gain numerous weapons and equipment to strengthen their heroes. World of Warcraft released in 2005 but still has launched numerous expansion packs and updates which only increase the world’s lore and playable environments. With over millions of active players, World of Warcraft is a MMORPG that is still considered to be one of the greatest ever released on the PC platform. What are you waiting for? Choose your race and see what makes millions of players log in to the massively open world of World of Warcraft.

World of Warcraft—or better known as simply WOW—has continued to impress gamers since its conception back in 2005. There have been several expansion packs adding new raids and quests in equal measures. Take for example the Nighthold Raid which has several bosses and tons of enemies for players to fight against. This is where knowing how to buff is key. Your tanks—those who usually are up front and take the majority of damage—will need healers and others to give them stats buffs like increased damage output or health regeneration. It will allow the more mage focused classes to attack from behind as well as any other ranged warrior to avoid being obliterated by swarms of enemies. Raids need those who can buff and trust us folks if you want to play any MMORPG—like WOW—you will need to read up online for the best buffs for each class. It may take some time but once you master it, raid parties will give you plenty of praise once the battle is over.

World of Warcraft: Legion Cinematic Trailer

Final Thoughts

Buffs in games as you can see are very important aspects of a lot of different games. These skills which seem small at times can really change the flow of a battle or help a team rise to victory. Without buffs, most games could be almost unbeatable at times and/or make some team battles last hours. Hopefully now not only do you have more of an appreciation for the buff terminology but you’re also more versed in its meaning and execution. As always folks, if you did happen to find this article helpful, comment down below. We would love to hear if you want us to What is articles for various topics so feel free to tell us and we may do an article about. If you need more gaming and anime knowledge, stick around to Honey’s Anime where we will help you master what you need to know.

World-of-Warcraft-gameplay-700x394 What is a Buff? [Gaming Definition, Meaning]


Author: Aaron

Hey everyone I’m Aaron Curbelo or Blade as I’m called by my YouTube Subscribers. I’ve been an anime/manga fan since I was a young kid. In terms of anime I have watched nearly a thousand shows and have read hundreds of manga series. I love writing and honestly was so happy to join Honey’s Anime to get a shot to write articles for such a wonderful site. I’m a firm believer in respect in the anime community being the most important embodiment we should all have. We all love anime and we have varying opinions of series but we should respect one another for those differences! Life is too precious to spend it making needless arguments in a community that should be the shining example of loving an amazing medium. I hope as a writer for Honey’s Anime I can bring you folks some amazing articles to read and enjoy!

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